German prosecutors ‘have evidence’ suspect killed Madeleine McCann


(FILES) This file undated handout photograph released by the Metropolitan Police in London on June 3, 2020, shows Madeleine McCann who disappeared in Praia da Luz, Portugal on May 3, 2007. - Belgium reopened the investigation on June 11, 2020 into the 1996 murder of a German teenager because of a possible link with the man suspected of murdering British girl Madeleine McCann. Carola Titze, 16, was found dead with her body mutilated in July 1996 in a resort town on the Belgian coast. The public prosecutor's office in Bruges "is indeed reopening the file relating to this murder," a spokesman told AFP, without further details. (Photo by Handout / METROPOLITAN POLICE / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / METROPOLITAN POLICE " - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS (Photo by HANDOUT/METROPOLITAN POLICE/AFP via Getty Images) - HANDOUT/AFP
(FILES) This file undated handout photograph released by the Metropolitan Police in London on June 3, 2020, shows Madeleine McCann who disappeared in Praia da Luz, Portugal on May 3, 2007. – Belgium reopened the investigation on June 11, 2020 into the 1996 murder of a German teenager because of a possible link with the man suspected of murdering British girl Madeleine McCann. Carola Titze, 16, was found dead with her body mutilated in July 1996 in a resort town on the Belgian coast. The public prosecutor’s office in Bruges “is indeed reopening the file relating to this murder,” a spokesman told AFP, without further details. (Photo by Handout / METROPOLITAN POLICE / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE – MANDATORY CREDIT “AFP PHOTO / METROPOLITAN POLICE ” – NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS – DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS (Photo by HANDOUT/METROPOLITAN POLICE/AFP via Getty Images) – HANDOUT/AFP

There is compelling evidence the German prime suspect in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann killed her but it cannot be shared with the public, German prosecutors said on Tuesday.

“If you knew the evidence we had you would come to the same conclusion as I do,” Hans Christian Wolters, the prosecutor in charge of the case told the BBC. 

“But I can’t give you details because we don’t want the accused to know what we have on him — these are tactical considerations.” 

Christian Brückner, a 43-year-old convicted paedophile and rapist, was named as a suspect in the toddler’s disappearance in June.

But German prosecutors have yet to charge him in connection with the case and say that while they have evidence it is not yet enough to secure a conviction.

“I can’t promise, I can’t guarantee that we have enough to bring a charge but I’m very confident because what we have so far doesn’t allow any other conclusion at all,” Mr Wolters told the BBC.

CORRECTION - A handout picture taken in 2018 and released by Italian Carabinieri on June 5, 2020 shows Christian B. when he was arrested for drug trafficking in Italy. -  - AFP
CORRECTION – A handout picture taken in 2018 and released by Italian Carabinieri on June 5, 2020 shows Christian B. when he was arrested for drug trafficking in Italy. – – AFP

Madeleine McCann disappeared from the holiday villa where she was staying with her family in the Portuguese resort of Praia da Luz on May 3, 2007. She was three years old at the time.

Mr Wolters has previously admitted that without further evidence charges may never be brought against Brückner over her disappearance.

Last month, an internal Portuguese police memo leaked to the press described its officers as “shocked” after a briefing from German counterparts. Portuguese police left the meeting convinced German prosecutors have “no evidence, just speculation” and were determined to “keep Brückner in prison at all costs”.

A career criminal, Brückner is currently serving a 21-month sentence for drug offences. He will remain behind bars when that ends in January, after losing an appeal against a separate seven-year sentence for the 2005 rape of a 72-year-old woman in the same area of Portugal where Madeleine went missing.

Mr Wolters told the BBC current investigations have uncovered new evidence Brückner committed three other sex crimes during his time in Portugal, two of them against children. He said he hopes to bring charges in connection with these alleged offences next year.

Lawyers for Brückner insist he is innocent.



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